Thinking Inside the Box

A Paddocks Sectional Title Lifestyle Blog

Are Fines in Sectional Title Schemes Legal?

Can a body corporate fine an owner?

Can the body corporate of a sectional title scheme, through its trustees or managing agent impose fines on owners and residents for breaches of the rules?

Neither the Sectional Titles Act nor the prescribed rules (the governing legislation) provide for the imposition of fines or penalties on apparent transgressors of a scheme’s rules.

So the default position is ‘No’!

If you’ve received a fine from the trustees or the managing agent and your scheme’s rules don’t provide for fining – the fine may well be unenforceable.

But…

It is possible for a body corporate to impose legally enforceable fines if the body corporate has properly adopted a carefully drafted rule providing for fining owners and residents.

However, in order to be enforceable this rule must be:

1)   reasonable, and

2)   take into account the principles of natural justice, especially the principle ‘Let both sides be heard’, which requires that a hearing be called to give the apparent transgressor an opportunity to state his case before being found guilty and a fine being issued.

If, after the hearing, the trustees find the person to be guilty of breaching the rules they can impose a reasonable fine.

It is important to note that for a fining rule to be enforceable it must be carefully drafted, passed by the required consensus level (special resolution for a conduct rule, unanimous resolution for a management rule) and it must be filed at the Deeds Office.

So if your body corporate wants to be able to impose fines I recommend that you get an attorney, well versed in sectional title, to draft the fining rule for you and ensure it is properly filed at the Deeds Office.

Have you been illegally fined in your scheme? Share by commenting below.

 

Image source: http://fiscalbridge.com

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110 comments on “Are Fines in Sectional Title Schemes Legal?

  1. Marlene De Beer
    July 25, 2017

    Good Morning

    We are shareholders in a shareblock, the new board has instituted some very hefty fines to the new house rules, this has not been filed at the deeds office, can it be enforced.

    They have also threatened to clamp vehicles wheels and you need to pay R350.00
    to have this removed.

    If shareholders are 30 days in arrears with their levies they deny non-permanent residents to their properties and permanent residents may also be denied access to their homes, visitors to permanent residence gets denied entry unless they pay a gate fee of R130.00 per person.

    They have also instituted a new rule that if you buy a plot you need to pay R3 500.00 admin fee and if you start to build then you need to pay an additional R6 500.00 this is all non-refundable, previously new buyers used to pay R250.00 admin fee.

    They have also put in another rule that when you start building you need to put down a builders deposit of R10 000.00 of which they will only refund R7 000.00.

    Your advice and feedback will be greatly appreciated.

    Kind Regards
    Marlene De Beer

    • Paddocks
      August 10, 2017

      Dear Marlene,

      Thank you for your comment. We are more than happy to help, however we do not give free opinions / advice. Please email us on consulting@paddocks.co.za with regards to your matter, and we can provide you with a no-obligation quote, so that we can assist you.

      Kind regards,
      Paddocks

  2. Margie
    July 19, 2017

    My sister rented my sisters unit for two years, in that time the chairman’s sister threw a tantrum when my sister moved trellises that were put in the middle of her garden. My sister moved them to the boundary. The neighbor went to court to apply for a protection order. Needless to say this case had been going on for two years. My sister started renting my unit and the chair has placed her own personal legal fees onto my levy. When I instructed the chair to remove the chairs personal legal fees off my levy I have been ignored and charged interest on the chairs personal legal fees that are st R10,000,00. It’s against the law to add anything onto an owners levy. Am I right? Any suggestions

    • Paddocks
      August 10, 2017

      Dear Margie,

      Thank you for your comment. We are more than happy to help, however we do not give free opinions / advice. Please email us on consulting@paddocks.co.za with regards to your matter, and we can provide you with a no-obligation quote, so that we can assist you.

      Kind regards,
      Paddocks

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This entry was posted on June 3, 2013 by in Financial, Legal and tagged , , .

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